Toyota recalls 700 Prius hybrids in Ireland

Possible issue with software that may cause vehicle to stop

Toyota is recalling Prius models built between March 2009 and this month

Toyota is recalling Prius models built between March 2009 and this month


Toyota is recalling nearly 700 Prius hybrid models due to a computer problem that could cause the vehicle to stop. The move is part of a global recall of 1.9 million Prius cars manufactured between March 2009 and this month. It relates to the third-generation versions of the car, of which 800 have been sold in Ireland to date.

The company, which has had a number of recalls in recent years including some involving the Prius, said there had been 11 incidents in Europe of the computer problem but there had been no accidents or injuries. None of the incidents occurred in Ireland.

It said the latest incident involved a possible issue with the software “used to control the boost converter in the intelligent power module”.

The boost converter is required when driving with a high system load, for example when accelerating hard from standstill. The company said: “Toyota has identified that the software setting could lead to higher thermal stress occurring in certain insulated-gate bipolar transistors in the boost converter which may lead to them deforming or being damaged.

“Should this happen, warning lights may be illuminated and the car is likely to switch to ‘failsafe’ operation. It can still be driven, but with reduced power. In limited cases the hybrid system may shut down, causing the vehicle to stop. The driver will not experience any change in the vehicle’s behaviour or performance prior to the problem occurring.”

Toyota added that the issue would not occur in other of the company’s hybrid vehicles as these used different systems. The recall will involve an update of the control software and owners are being contacted this week.

A spokesman highlighted the fact that on average 20 million cars are recalled every year in Europe, but it is Toyota’s policy to publicise its recalls, in contrast to most of the other brands.